Play and learn with us! The Children’s Discovery Garden is a child-friendly place to discover, experience and love our world through gardening. Divided into three main areas, the garden offers opportunities to play among interesting and whimsical plant displays, learn about Ohio habitats, and grow vegetables and other backyard plants.
Major Areas to Discover
The Ohio Habitats area features woods, prairie and wetland gardens as well as a limestone grotto complete with fossils found at our own Germantown MetroPark. As visitors stroll through the collection of native plants they will be sure to notice the limestone grotto waterfall, leaf and animal prints in the sidewalks, a giant tree that is home to insects, and a pond full of native fish such as bass and bluegill.
The Playful Plants area changes from year to year, but always remains a place where our gardeners can get creative, share their love of plants and just have fun. When visiting you can get lost in a music maze, water plants using an old fashioned water pump, watch for wildlife and immerse your senses in an abundance of plants. Also look for fun themed areas. Past years’ themes have included a Wizard of Oz garden, Hula Hoop Obstacle Course and Pun-ny Green House.
Skeeter’s Garden is a special area where kids and families can get hands-on gardening experience with our staff during special drop-in and scheduled programs. While visiting, families can see where their favorite vegetables come from and learn about fun plants to include in their own backyards.
Top 10 things to do
- “Shake hands” with the plants in the sensory garden. A variety of furry, smooth, smelly and interesting plants are waiting to excite your senses.
- Fill a watering can with water from our old fashioned hand-pump then look for raindrop signs throughout the garden and give the plants a drink.
- Build a home for gnomes and fairies in a hidden corner of the Ohio Woods garden.
- Search for caterpillars in a special section of our Wildlife Garden.
- Find out about the vegetables and other food plants planted throughout the garden. (Even better, find a gardener or ask them about it and they might let you try a sample!)
- Borrow a game or activity to try as a family. Our Garden Greeter volunteers have a variety of games and scavenger hunts you can do together. Just ask at the Welcome Station in the front courtyard.
- Crawl through the cave and find fossils of creatures that lived here long ago
- Sit on the boardwalk and search our pond for fish and frogs
- Design a garden or build anything from your imagination at our sand tables or sandbox.
- Play a game of musical hide and seek with instruments hidden in the Music Maze.
The Children’s Discovery Garden is the result of collaboration between educators, gardeners, volunteers and staff inspired by the beauty found in their own backyards. Over the course of 10 years this dedicated team worked together to transform the original half acre vegetable garden into the two acre plant-lovers paradise that exists today.
In May 2006 the gates to the Children’s Discovery Garden opened to a large crowd of Miami Valley families. Since that day local visitors are treated to an ever changing garden experience where children can play, learn and be a part of nature.
This garden was made possible by Five Rivers MetroParks and the fund-raising efforts of the Wegerzyn Gardens Foundation.
School Group Tour Info
All groups of 10 or more children visiting the Children’s Discovery Garden must schedule through the education department. Groups arriving without a reservation will need to wait until all scheduled groups are finished with their activities.
A variety of guided and self-guided field trips are available and can be found here. Please call 937-277-6545 to schedule a visit.